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"What is the best attraction in the city?"

Translation:Quelle est la meilleure attraction de la ville ?

June 11, 2020



Hi - Two questions: 1. Quelle attraction est la meillieure dans la ville? I know best is misspelled, however, I would like to know if this translation is OK; 2. When should one use "dans" vs. de la? I've seen it expressed in the two ways but can't discern the sublety. Merci.


You can say "Quelle attraction est la meilleure dans la ville?", it's ok, it's just not the nicest way to turn it (according to my french ears).

I'm not really sure of my grammar on this precise point so I won't go further, but for me "de la ville" is more like "of the city" than "in the city" (which are, according to my poor english knowledge, equivalents).

Beware of "de", it can be tricky. "If you want to ask "what can I do in the city?" you will have to use "dans" because "que puis-je faire de la ville?" means you're a mayor trying to find something to do to change your city.


Can "...en ville" be used here?


Yes, no problem with "en ville" here.

Nevertheless, if I had to ask this question, I would rather say something like "Qu'est ce qu'il faut voir dans la ville?" Or "qu'est ce qu'il y a de plus intéressant à faire en ville?"


Thanks for your comment, Nicolas, but how do you distinguish the two?


"de la ville" can introduce anything related to the city. For example you can say "le drapeau de la ville est bleu et blanc".

"En ville" indicates that the thing we are talking about is located in the city. It is only about geography.

Complément du nom vs complément circonstanciel de lieu, usually.


Thanks for your time, Nicolas. I'll need some time to digest it. BTW, are you French, Nic?


You're welcome! Yes I am french, and it's quite hard to explain things from my mother tongue, my grammar lessons are too old :)


What about you? Are you trying to complete a grand slam of romance languages?


No. I haven't had the intention to do so.


What's so wrong about writing "laquelle est la meilleure attraction" instead of "quelle est..."


I can see that it's wrong, but I'm blowed if I can explain why in anything like a comprehensible way.

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